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Osteoporos Int. 2008 May;19(5):681-6. Epub 2007 Oct 30.

Effects of risedronate on fracture risk in postmenopausal women with osteopenia.

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Toni Stabile Osteoporosis Center, Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY, 10032, USA.


This posthoc analysis of four trials studied the efficacy of risedronate to reduce fragility fractures in postmenopausal women with osteopenia (i.e., T-scores between -1 and -2.5). Risedronate reduced the fracture risk by 73% (p = 0.023) in this population of women with low femoral neck bone mass and no prevalent vertebral fractures.


Low bone mass represents an increasing health risk and burden. Half of fragility fractures occur in osteopenic women underscoring the need for treatments reducing fracture risk. This analysis reports the effect of risedronate to reduce fragility fracture risk in osteopenic women without prevalent vertebral fractures.


Postmenopausal women with osteopenia, defined as femoral neck T-score between -1 and -2.5 by DXA and no prevalent vertebral fractures, were identified from four controlled randomized trials (BMD Multinational, BMD North America, VERT Multinational and VERT North America). The risk reduction for fragility fractures in patients receiving 5 mg risedronate daily for 1.5 to 3 years compared to placebo was assessed. An additional sensitivity analysis excluded patients who were osteopenic at the femoral neck but had a BMD lower than -2.5 SD at the lumbar spine.


Six hundred and twenty postmenopausal women with osteopenia were included, receiving either placebo (n = 309) or risedronate 5 mg (n = 311). Risedronate reduced the risk of fragility fractures by 73% over 3 years versus placebo (p = 0.023); cumulative fragility fracture incidence was 6.9% in placebo-treated versus 2.2% in risedronate-treated patients. The magnitude of the effect was similar in the sensitivity analysis subset.


Risedronate significantly reduced the risk of fragility fractures in postmenopausal women with osteopenia (femoral neck T-score between -1 and -2.5 SD) and no prevalent vertebral fractures.

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